SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — UPDATE 5 p.m. Security or lack thereof. Scranton employees have expressed their concern about security within City Hall. Now the Scranton Police Department will be stationed inside the building.
Scranton police headquarters is 3.5 blocks away from City Hall. Residents and city employees are worried there isn’t enough security. The city of Scranton employs more than 400 workers. A good portion of those employees work out of City Hall.
As former councilman and now mayor, Wayne Evans has been working to bring security to the building. Scranton police opened up its new substation on the first floor where the sewer authority did business. The sewer authority is now on the second floor.
“It’s open to the public. Anybody can go in there, ask questions, file a report and if there is any type of incident inside City Hall, these officers will be immediately available to respond,” Chief Carl Graziano of the Scranton Police Department said.
Graziano says two full-time officers were moved from headquarters to City Hall. Their jobs will be to write police reports and monitor more than 200 surveillance cameras in the city. Two other officers will use the office to patrol downtown.
“What’s happening in our nation, we all know there have been incidents at municipal buildings and public buildings. We felt that it was time to have presence in that building again,” Graziano said.
Mayor Evans says he and his team have been working together for the past month to find a solution. This comes after city employees expressed concern of the lack of security within City Hall.
“This is the people’s building and we do people’s business here. So we wanted to be as open as possible, you know. We’re not ready to be putting up the metal detectors. We’re not at that place yet,” Evans said.
Evans says the next phase will begin in the coming months.
“Most of that will be technology-driven but we really can’t talk about that because we don’t want the bad guys to know what we’re doing as far as security is concerned,” Evans said.
Now, there are two other substations in the city. The substation at City Hall will only be open during business hours. This isn’t the first time a substation has been in City Hall.
They removed it back in 2005 when the city built its new police headquarters on Washington Avenue.